Queen's University

Dr. Marc Epprecht

Professor, Cultural Studies Program, Department of History, Department of Global Development Studies
SOCIAL SCIENCES, HUMANITIES, HEALTH, HISTORY, ENVIRONMENT, POLITICS AND POLICY, CULTURE, GLOBAL ISSUES AND DEVELOPMENT, SEX AND GENDER, HUMAN RIGHTS STRUGGLES IN AFRICA
LinkedIn profile for Dr. Marc Epprecht

Autobiography

I received my PhD in history from Dalhousie University. Prior to teaching at Queen's, I taught at the University of Zimbabwe. I am a professor in the Department of Global Development Studies, cross-listed with History, and Cultural Studies at Queen’s University. I am the 2006 winner of the Canadian Association of African Studies Joel Gregory Prize for my book Hungochani: The History of a Dissident Sexuality in Southern Africa. In 2009 I was runner-up for the Mel Herskovitz prize for my book Heterosexual Africa?, and the same year was awarded the Desmond Tutu Award for Outstanding Contributions to the Study of Sexuality in Africa.I served on the executive including as President, of the Canadian Association of African Studies from 2016-9, and have twice organized the association’s international conference to be held here at Queen’s. It has been a wonderfully enriching experience over the years to be a visiting professor at the University of KwaZulu-Natal, U. of Basel, and the History Workshop at the U. of Witwatersrand, Johannesburg.

Research Interests:

Social history in southern Africa, especially the colonial era; gender and sexuality more broadly, especially cultural constructions of non-normative sexualities (lgbti, msm, wsw, etc) and contestations around masculinities; HIV/AIDS; environment and health, especially in urban contexts in South Africa; contestations over development throughout Africa but especially Zimbabwe, Lesotho, South Africa, and KwaZulu-Natal; pedagogy for development (e.g., methods and ethics of work-study abroad programs); the politics of public history, culture, and human rights struggles, particularly around gender and sexuality, but also increasingly around the imperatives of transition to environmentally just societies in African and globally. 

Supervisory interests:

Anything that falls within the broad parameters above. Examples of graduate students and topics include:

Doctoral level:

- Sylvie St. Jacques, supervisor PhD dissertation, (DEVS 2018-), #Fallist movement and social protests in South Africa

- Hannah Ascough, supervisor PhD dissertation, (DEVS 2018-), environmental narratives in South Africa

- James Kwateng-Yeboah, supervisor PhD dissertation, (Cultural Studies 2016-), African Pentecostal Immigrants in Toronto: Assessing Migrants' Aspirations and Identities 

- Diane Whitelaw, supervisor PhD dissertation, (History 2016-), Political Intimacies: Mainza Chona, Autochthony, and the Formation of the Zambian State.”

- Emma Paszat, co-supervisor with Margaret Little, PhD dissertation (Political Studies, 2013-18) - Cross-Movement Coalitions and Sexuality Politics: How activists resist political homophobias in East Africa

- Toby Moorsom, co-supervisor with Robert Shenton, PhD dissertation (History 2005-2016) Neo-Liberalism, Indigenous Accumulation and Environmental Change in Zambia. A History of Emergent Farmers in Southern Province 1974-2005

- Mary Caesar, supervisor PhD dissertation (History 2009- 15) A 'new experiment in local government' The Local Health Commission: A Study of Public Health and Local Governance in Black Urban Areas in Natal, South Africa, 1930 - 1959

- Ralph Callebert, co-supervisor with Robert Shenton, PhD dissertation (History 2007-Sept. 2011) Livelihood Strategies among Dockworkers in Durban, 1900-1951

MA level: 

- Chiedza Pasipanodya DEVS 2016-7, Assessing the Effectiveness of the Women’s Movement in Zimbabwe: A Case Study on Women of Zimbabwe Arise (WOZA)

- Yesutor Gbewonyo DEVS 2015-7 sexual and reproductive health needs of adolescents with intellectual and developmental disabilities in Ghana

- Darren Major, DEVS 2013-15 Intersections of Post-development theory with NGO discourse

- Michelle Johnson, DEVS 2013-15 Street Connected Children in Mombasa

- Adam Houston, DEVS 2010-11 HIV-Tuberculosis Co-infection, South Africa

- Mary Caesar, supervisor MA dissertation, (History) Gender, Politics and Social Medicine in South Africa, 1940-1959. Dec. 2008

- Dillon Smith, DEVS 2016-7,Re-Thinking China’s Development Strategy in the West: ‘Green Growth’ and Chinese Investment Experiences in Kenya

- Hayley Morgan, DEVS 2011-2017 Sexuality Education in Cape Town High Schools

- Renee Rogers DEVS 2015-16 Voluntourism Organizations and Their Promotional Materials: A Critical Assessment of Changes Over The Past Ten Years

- Lucy Mackrell DEVS 2015-16 The Vulnerability Paradigm: Problematizing the Development Industry’s Dominant Narrative Surrounding Heterosexual Transmission of HIV/AIDS in Botswana

- Tanya Greenberg HIST 2014/15 Women in the 1950’s Anti-Apartheid Defiance Campaign

- Naomi Mares, HIST 2013/14 South African women in the anti-apartheid struggle

- Long, Natasha, DEVS 2013/14 Funerals and HIV/AIDS stigma in South Africa

- Leslie Wells, History 2010/11 AIDS denialism in South Africa

- Lara Purvis, co-supervisor, DEVS 2009-10 Lesbian activism in South Africa

- Jess Veaudry, supervisor DEVS 2009-10

- Rebecca Dowswell, History. Nyerere’s Ujamaa from Without. July 2009

- Jesscia Cammaert, History ‘Negotiating the Blade’: Colonial Discourse on Female Circumcision and Policy with the Northern Protectorate of the Gold Coast, 1933-38,” August 2008

- Anne McNeely, History, Pietermaritzburg’s ‘Sanitary Conscience’: Race and Municipal Water Planning from 1900 to 1968, April 2008

Queen's Undergraduate Honours Theses:

- Jacqueline O’Rourke DEVS 501, 2018 Empowering sexual minority groups in Uganda through a green, de-growth perspective

- Heather Donkers DEVS 501 2015-16 Black lesbian anti-apartheid activism in SA (recipient of the Undergraduate Student Summer Research Fellowship) 

- Olivia Sonnenberg, History, May 2014 Zimbabwean women in the 2nd Chimurenga

- Meghan Donevan, DEVS 2011 – Pornography in South Africa

Most Recent Project

Welcome to Greater Edendale

A challenging, innovative, and thoughtful examination of the history and Edendale Bookpolitics of South Africa, Welcome to Greater Edendale questions the common assumptions embedded in environmental policy, gender relations, democracy, and the neoliberal model of development in which so many African cities are ensnared.

Keep Reading...

Other Projects

  • Sexual Diversity in Africa

    How does one address homophobia without threatening majority rule democracy and freedoms of speech and faith? How does one "Africanize" sexuality research, empirically and theoretically, in an environment that is not necessarily welcoming to African scholars?

    Keep Reading...
  • Sexuality and Social Justice in Africa

    Based on pioneering research on the history of homosexualities and engagement with current lgbti and HIV/AIDS activism, I provide a sympathetic overview of the issues at play and a hopeful outlook on the potential of sexual rights for all.

    Keep Reading...
  • Hungochani, Second Edition

    In the tapestry of global queer cultures Africa has long been neglected or stereotyped. In Hungochani, I seek to change these limited views by tracing Southern Africa's history and traditions of homosexuality, modern gay and lesbian identities, and the vibrant gay rights movement that has emerged since the 1980s.

    Keep Reading...
  • Heterosexual Africa?

    Heterosexual Africa? aims to understand an enduring stereotype about Africa and Africans. It asks how Africa came to be defined as a “homosexual-free zone” during the colonial era, and how this idea not only survived the transition to independence but flourished under conditions of globalization and early panicky responses to HIV/AIDS.

    Keep Reading...